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Book Reviews - A Cautionary Tale

A Cautionary Tale

A cautionary tale for South Africans doing business in Africa
Review: Muriel Hau Yoon
Black Beach, by Daniel Janse van Rensburg and Tracey Pharoah (Penguin Random House SA)
This is by no means your average survival tale of some gung-ho testosterone-loaded Rambo-type who endured months of gut-wrenching confinement in a hell-hole prison for some illicit arms deal or failed coup.

Rather, this is the true story of Daniel Janse van Rensburg from Hoekwil, near George – a regular, honest-to-goodness, South African husband, father and son, who gets swallowed up in a Machiavellian maelstrom when a legitimate business deal with a well-connected local tycoon in Equatorial Guinea goes horribly wrong.

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Name: Mr. Daniel Janse van Rensburg

Business phone: +27 64 852 3583

Mobile: +27 64 852 3583

Email Enquiry: info@daniel.africa


Review: Muriel Hau Yoon

A cautionary take for South Africans doing business in Africa
Posted On : November 20, 2022
Black Beach, by Daniel Janse van Rensburg and Tracey Pharoah (Penguin Random House SA)

This is by no means your average survival tale of some gung-ho testosterone-loaded Rambo-type who endured months of gut-wrenching confinement in a hell-hole prison for some illicit arms deal or failed coup.

Rather, this is the true story of Daniel Janse van Rensburg from Hoekwil, near George – a regular, honest-to-goodness, South African husband, father and son, who gets swallowed up in a Machiavellian maelstrom when a legitimate business deal with a well-connected local tycoon in Equatorial Guinea goes horribly wrong.

Janse van Rensburg’s nightmare begins on a sunny day in October 2013, in the capital Malabo, on Bioko Island. He is finalising a new airline deal with Gabriel Angabi, whom he has known since 2001. A former mayor of Malabo, Angabi is also a brother-in-law to the President’s number-one wife.

Without warning or explanation, Angabi explodes into a vituperative rage and reneges on their signed and sealed contract, demanding the immediate return of $600 000. One can’t help wondering whether this mercurial behaviour has something to do with the local belief system which is fraught with voodoo and black magic – a fertile breeding ground for paranoia and witch hunts.

Or perhaps the seeds of distrust had already been scattered nine years earlier, when mercenaries Nick du Toit and Simon Mann were arrested and thrown into Black Beach prison in 2004 following a failed coup attempt against Obiang.

At the time, Janse van Rensburg was working in Malabo and was briefly detained but released after they discovered he had no ties to the soldiers of fortune.  However the plot soured relations between the political elite and foreign businessmen.

What came after that fateful day in October 2013, is an inexorable descent into a hell of unspeakable depravity. Janse van Rensburg is flung into Black Beach prison, also known as the “Auschwitz of Africa”. There he survives cerebral malaria, gang assaults and police brutality. As the only “blanco” in the prison, he is targeted by thugs and thieves. Angabi is clearly hell-bent on breaking his spirit and inflicting as much sadistic torture as possible without killing him.

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https://bookartville.com/a-cautionary-take-for-south-africans-doing-business-in-africa/

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